The insurance industry has shown that timely and swift adaptation to online services can turn the tide for businesses struggling to cope with the suspension of conventional methods of trading in the times of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The sector was able to render non-stop service to the public to meet their need for insurance coverage in the light of the precautionary measures announced by the Supreme Committee tasked with dealing with the epidemic (COVID-19) including suspension of conventional methods and closure of customers’ counters.
The report prepared by the Capital Market Authority (CMA) on the performance of the insurance companies in rendering services during the outbreak of coronavirus and the measures taken to curb the epidemic shows that the number of insurance policies issued electronically exceeded 130,000, sold via various electronic windows and channels.
Ahmed Ali al Maamari, vice president for Insurance Sector at CMA, expressed his appreciation for such quick response by insurance companies and adapting to ensure continuity of the insurance coverage to cover all types of risks.
Maamari pointed out the importance of evaluating the experience of the insurance sector which has proved the readiness of the insurance companies to face sudden transformation in suspending the conventional transactions and move toward electronic transactions.
“In 2016, CMA issued detailed guidance, urging insurance companies to improve the quality of insurance services by adopting modern technology and speeding up the processes and easing provision of the services to the public.”
Maamari emphasised that the data and indicators from delivery of online services will institute a new era in the development of the Omani insurance market in line with global practices.
Among the policies sold electronically during the outbreak, most were issued through call centers (61.9%), followed by those through websites of the companies (12.9%), 1.56% through electronic applications provided by five companies and 23.5% from various electronic windows.